Andrew Cluley

Former Reporter

Like many, I first came to this area when I started school at the University of Michigan, then fell in love with the community and haven’t left. After graduating from U of M in the mid 1990’s I interned at WDET for several years, while also working a variety of jobs in Ann Arbor. Then in 1999 I joined the WEMU news team.

While working for WEMU I’ve covered the Ann Arbor City Council and School Board beats, Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti City Council and School Boards and the Washtenaw County Commissioners. Not to mention pretty much everything else in the area. I really enjoy covering local news, partly because it’s so overlooked by other media outlets. In many ways what happens at city hall or in your community school has a bigger impact on your life than what’s going on in Lansing or Washington. I get the chance to track down these important stories and bring them to you every day.

When I’m not at work I love to follow sports, particularly U of M, and Detroit’s professional teams. Saturdays in the fall you can count on me watching Michigan football… and Sundays I’m probably suffering through another Lions debacle.

I also enjoy running and am proud of finishing the 2006 Detroit Marathon. Would love to run another, but I’m holding off until I think I have a realistic chance to complete one in under four hours.

Ways To Connect

Willow Run Bomber Plant
savethebomberplant.org

Smiling faces abound at the Yankee Air Museum as they are set to clear the first hurdle in saving a portion of the Willow Run bomber plant.  A lot of work however is still needed to achieve their goal.


Ann Arbor Township Fire Department logo
Ann Arbor Township Fire Department

Fire Fighters in Ann Arbor Township will soon have cleaner air to breathe at the community's two fire stations. 

University of Michigan Health System
Courtesy Photo / University of Michigan Health System

A new treatment procedure developed in Michigan can handle the most disturbing symptoms of dementia with the use of fewer drugs.  


Uber logo
blog.uber.com

Ann Arbor area residents have a couple of new options to get around town, but the city’s taxi cab board has concerns.  The conflict between traditional cab drivers and new services like Uber and Lyft has come to Washtenaw County.


Eastern Michigan University will kick off a celebration of Pease Auditorium’s 100th anniversary tomorrow.  


Better Transit Now Sign
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Members of Better Transit Now say defeating next week’s transit millage is the first step towards improving Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority Service. 

Former AATA board member Ted Annis believes it will take time and likely require Ann Arbor City Council changing the make-up of the authority’s board.  Annis thinks a drive for more efficient service likely will require a shake-up at the AAATA.


Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

As University of Michigan students prepare to leave town for the summer one common place to stop is the intersection of Oakland, East University, and Tappan.  The city of Ann Arbor has once more set up dumpsters for bulk recycling and trash in the area.


Tricia Kinley, Mike Johnston, Rebekah Warren
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

For years Republicans and Democrats across Michigan have raised concerns about the state’s personal property tax.  Voters in August will decide if a solution to phase-out the tax and reimburse local governments can go forward.


Patrick Gibson
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Several hundred people learned more about oil exploration and mineral rights leases at Scio Township Thursday night.  Township officials held an informational meeting at the Washtenaw Intermediate School District facility on Wagner with a variety of experts because West Bay Exploration has leases to explore about one-thousand acres in the township. 


PR Fitness Boston Marathon Runners
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

An area runner will return to the Boston Marathon this year partly to show he will do what he wants to do and isn't letting fear stop him.  Police stopped John Farah just blocks from the finish line last year when the first bomb went off.  

Farah is one of about 30 area runners that train with PR Fitness and will be running the Boston Marathon Monday.  Farah thinks the race will be safe this year as he runs Boston for the 19th time.

Ann Arbor Logo
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

The 4 Ann Arbor City Council members seeking Mayor John Hieftje's job will participate in a forum in his Ford School of Public Policy class Wednesday.  The forum set to begin at 1 in the afternoon in Weill Hall will be open to the public.   Hieftje says he doesn't know exactly what the students will be asking Sabra Briere, Sally Hart Petersen, Stephen Kunselman, and Christopher Taylor.


Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor officials expect to have the construction schedule for the rest of the new skatepark set within the next week.  Park Planner Amy Kuras thinks the facility will be completed by the scheduled June 21st grand opening unless there are a lot of weather issues. 

Kuras says most of the remaining work is in two areas.


Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

It's still a little over two months before the opening day for the new skatepark in Ann Arbor, but interest in skating already seems to be growing.  The skatepark's grand opening is set for June 21st, which is International Go Skating Day.


Last Minute Tax Rush

Apr 14, 2014
H&R Block Office in Ann Arbor
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Tuesday's the deadline to file your taxes and plenty of people are still finishing, or just starting their paperwork.   

Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Windy conditions continue today and it's causing an increasing number of power outages. DTE Energy spokesperson Alejandro Bodipo-Memba tells WEMU about six-thousand Washtenaw County customers are without electricity. 

Washtenaw County Sheriff Jerry Clayton
Courtesy Photo / Washtenaw County

Washtenaw County communities that contract with the Sheriff’s department for policing will likely see one percent increases in their bills in 2016 and 2017.  The County Commissioners vote on that proposal this week, but Sheriff Jerry Clayton is calling for a larger conversation on how law enforcement is funded. 

Clayton doesn’t believe the current model is sustainable.  He thinks a county-wide model could be designed to work for communities that contract with his department and those that have their own police departments.

Ann Arbor's Main Street
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Despite all of the snow this winter, the sidewalks along Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor remained easily passable for pedestrians.  That’s thanks in large part to the Main Street Business Improvement Zone, an effort where property owners have voluntarily agreed to pay more taxes for a variety of services. 

Ed Shaffran is President of The Shaffran Companies and chairman of the Main Street BIZ.  He says next month property owners on some neighboring streets will vote to see if the BIZ will expand.


Michigan Stadium
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Fans interested in attending the Manchester United-Real Madrid game at Michigan Stadium will likely need to turn to the secondary market if they don't have tickets yet.

Ann Arbor Public Schools Administration Building
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor Public Schools officials say they are pleased with the number of schools of choice and young fives applications the district received.  The exact number of applicants won’t be released until next week after all of the applications have been processed and seats are filled.  

Director of Communications Liz Margolis says they have to let parents know by Tuesday or Wednesday the status of applications.


Standard and Poor’s has lowered the Ann Arbor Public Schools credit rating from AA-Plus to A-Plus.  The downgrade came after the district used more reserves than originally anticipated this fiscal year. 

Communications Director Liz Margolis says it’s the second downgrade in the last couple of years, but they shouldn’t continue.

In a statement Superintendent Jeanice Swift says they have in place a solid financial plan to improve fiscal stability.  Swift highlights efforts to increase revenue through attracting more students while also taking steps to decrease expenditures without reducing services for students.  She believes these moves will help the district begin to rebuild fund balance within a reasonable time.

According to Margolis efforts to increase enrollment appear to be working and the district should be able to increase fund equity next year.  She believes this combined with contract concessions the district is working on should lead to higher credit ratings.  Margolis adds since the district has no plans to sell bonds now she doesn't anticipate an immediate financial impact from the credit downgrade.

Towsley Apartments Fire Damage
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

One-third of the units in an Ypsilanti Township apartment building are considered a total loss after an early morning fire. Six of the 18-units at Towsley Apartments in the 400-block of North Harris Road were destroyed.  A building inspector will have to determine whether the rest of the units are still habitable, but for the time being those residents have also been required to leave.

Resident Mark Whitaker says the future for the complex is uncertain but all residents are looking for housing in the short term.  


Doppstadt Grinder at Ann Arbor's composting facility.
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Plate scrapings are now being accepted in Ann Arbor composting carts.  The city added the food scraps this year after a study of residential trash found about half of it was food that could be composted.

  

  

Library Lane surface parking lot
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Members of the Library Green Conservancy are hopeful Ann Arbor City Council actions will help people work together to develop a park above the city’s underground parking structure.  Last month council approved 65-hundred to 12-thousand square feet to be used as a park, but that’s now been revised to approximately 12-thousand square feet.

Library Green Conservancy member Will Hathaway thinks everyone wants the same goal, a quality park above the underground parking structure.


AAATA Transit Millage Community Forum
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

About 150 people packed the downtown Ann Arbor Library’s multi-purpose room to find out more about the proposed point-seven mill transit tax last night.  Supporters of the Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority millage appeared to outnumber critics at the League of Women Voters forum. 

    

Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority Bus
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

With the Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority Millage vote now less than a month away a wide variety of groups have endorsed the effort, including several agencies that work with seniors.  As Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, and Ypsilanti Township consider a point-seven mill tax to pay for expanded Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority service, senior groups have consistently come out in support. 

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